Tea and Art
Here is a selection of paintings, poems, and calligraphy that have been inspired by tea.
There are those who love to get dirty
and fix things.
They drink coffee at dawn,
beer after work.
And those who stay clean,
just appreciate things,
At breakfast they have milk
and juice at night.
There are those who do both,
they drink tea.
Return message to Kim Tochon who sent me a Poem
At Tochon's place, where he practices Zen and takes his ease,
the mind becomes distant, and days go slowly.
A path leads to stone steps around hidden orchids;
a gate faces rocky peaks beyond a curved pond.
He decocts herb medicine to disperse ennui,
he drinks tea to reduce sleep.
A past promise to live with rosy clouds
comes true naturally in the clear autumn.
Cho-ui was a Buddhist monk who was responsible for the 19th-century Korean tea revival.
To listen to the songs of birds, I skipped the evening meditation,
enjoyed a patch of grass by the edge of an ancient mountain stream.
Pleasure recollected depends on a beautiful phrase;
the appreciative mind meets with a close friend.
Spring water cries out in a rocky valley;
pine trees echo when wind is coming.
I drank a cup of tea and watched the flowing and stillness.
Quietly and naturally I seemed to forget the return of time.
Tea tempers the spirit and harmonizes the mind,
dispels lassitude and relieves fatigue; awakens
thought and prevents drowsiness.
733 - 804
As I recovered from illness,
my temples turned grey.
I laid down to rest and watch the waning moon
climb up my screen.
Sweet mace with tender lips, boiled in hot water,
Aromatic as tea.
Books and poetry are so dear to me
when I sit idle against my pillow.
The outdoor scene becomes fresh when rain falls,
All day long facing me lovingly
Is the sweet osmanthus.
c. 1084 - c. 1151
Two Rare Birds
Click for larger image
Saw Lu Yu off to Pick Tea
Thousand mountains greeted my departing friend
When spring tea blossoming again
With in depth knowledge in picking tea
Through morning mist or crimson evening clouds
His solitary journey is my envy
Rendezvous in a temple of a remote mountain
We enjoyed picnic by a clear pebble fountain
In this silent night
Lit up a candle light
I knocked a marble bell for chime
While deep in thought for old time.
Huang Pu Zheng
Passing a Mountain Hamlet in Late Spring Perchance
In this mountain hamlet
Of handful houses watered by a streamlet
Damsels were merrily picking tea fresh
From the east to the west!
Strolling on a stone lane,
Wondering why I left foot prints light and faint.
Not knowing all over the sky,
Pine flowers were flying high.
c. 1799 - c. 1862